The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0007 Monday, 7 January 2008
From: Edna Boris <
Date: Saturday, 5 Jan 2008 08:34:37 -0500
Subject: Misremembered Lines
When a doctor I was seeing for the first time heard that I teach courses
in Shakespeare, he said that he remembered all his life one line from
the *Merchant of Venice*, even though he didn't understand the line. So,
of course, I asked him what it was and then who said it. What he recited
was inaccurate (he had the word "happiness" where the word "silence"
should be), and he did not know who said it. With some searching, I
found the lines:
Thanks, i' faith, for silence is only commendable
In a neat's tongue dried and a maid not vendible. (1.1.111-112)*
Any idea why these would have stuck in someone's mind? As a doctor, he
struck me as particularly thorough, attentive, and helpful. Any
interpretative comments about these lines that I might pass along the
next time I see him?
-- Edna Boris
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